Friday, August 07, 2020 

An African exhibition for Angouleme gives a unique perspective for artists from the continent

RFI has an article about an online exhibition sponsored with Angouleme's convention showcasing the comics and cartoons drawn by African artists to show how there's talent on the African continent:
The work of 16 comic artists from seven African nations is showcased in an online-only exhibition, Afropolitan Comics. The French initiative, which germinated in South Africa, aims to show “what Africans can do”, the curators say.

Afropolitan Comics is part of the Africa 2020 project and regroups comic authors from South Africa, Zimbabwe, Nigeria, Cameroon, Senegal, Côte d’Ivoire and Algeria.

‘Afropolitan’ is an amalgam of the words 'Africa' and 'cosmopolitan' in a reminder of the modernity and diversity that exists across the African continent.

“We wanted to break away from the clichés and stereotypes about Africans. Also, inform people that comic authors in Africa do not just work on biographies or make fun of politicians,” says Joëlle Epée Mandengue, one of the four curators of the exhibition.

The online event is free to access and will be available, with Africa 2020, until July 2021. [...]

“The comics museum in France is the best partner for this type of exhibition as it is quite unique in this field with a solid reputation both in France and internationally,” explains Selen Daver, the cultural attaché at the French Embassy in South Africa.

Last year’s Art of Comics exhibition in Johannesburg focused on South African comics and graphic novels with a special section on the rich tradition of French comics. It aimed to reveal “common threads that tie France and South Africa together” in heroic fantasy, science fiction, history and other genre.
The art of comics and cartooning, as they note, may not be as big in south Africa as it is in Europe, but with any luck, this exhibition could help give what they do have a good boost, and best of all, it looks to be available for at least a year. What's regrettable, however, is that exhibitions like these rarely seem to figure in the USA. I did find news of an exhibition for south African comics that took place at Harlem's Studio Museum over a dozen years ago, but very few others, as the most notable exhibitions in the US seem to be dedicated far more to topics like Black American superhero history. Point: adventure isn't limited to just superhero fare, and there are other genres vital for history, sci-fi included. If foreign comics aren't as recognizable in the US as outside, the time's come to give them more serious focus. It's just as important history as what comes within the US.

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Thursday, August 06, 2020 

What a store manager heard people say about Jason Todd back in 1988

Here's an article from Newsarama/Games Radar from last May about Batman's Death in the Family, one I don't think I'd noticed before, where a guy running a store at the time this storyline came out in late 1988 tells his experiences with conversations about what customers thought of Jason Todd:
From a modern perspective it seems chilling, but what was it like in the heat of the moment?

"There was a lot of talk about the voting," said Joe Field, owner of Flying Colors Comics & Other Stuff in Concord, California. "Some were super energetic about it either rooting for Jason Todd to die or wanting him to survive. I was part of a retailer group back then called the Northern California Comic Dealers Association and the call-in vote to kill Jason and the sales that went with it were definitely part of our lively discussion."

Field's Flying Colors opened on October 3, 1988 - halfway through the release of the 'A Death in the Family' arc of Batman.

"To be honest, I got tired of the 'death wish' talk many had for killing off Jason Todd," Field continued. "Some fans thought that with Jason dead, Dick Grayson would become Robin again. Some just wanted him to die because it was a raw thing to do. Those people kinda creeped me out. I wasn't prepared to have to deal with that so soon after opening my shop."
When they say it seems chilling, they have no idea how right they are. This confirms there was - and doubtless still is - a segment of what I'll decidedly call pseudo-fandom who clearly weren't into the hobby for building it up, but rather, tearing it down. I don't know if these were what you'd call "casual" readers, but they certainly don't sound like somebody with a genuine interest or investment in the character creations in focus. Worst, naturally, is if they wanted an otherwise innocent kid who did recognize the differences between good and evil to die. If that's what they thought of Jason Todd, how do we know they thought any differently about innocent people real life?

It's almost funny how some thought, if Jason were sent to The Great Reward, Dick Grayson would actually return to his Robin role, even though he'd been given the Nightwing guise in 1984 by Marv Wolfman and George Perez as a way of moving him into adulthood, and seeking his own path as a costumed crimefighter while serving as leader of the Teen Titans. And in the end, a return didn't happen anyway. Rather, Timothy Drake took up the Robin role at the dawn of the 90s, and Chuck Dixon subsequently built up a solo book that ungrateful editors and publishers later destroyed. I've sometimes wondered why Wolfman, as the creator of a few of those characters, never tried to defend them the same way he originally did with Dick Grayson, based on the Nightwing role he and Perez created for Dick to take up.

But for now, the main point has to be: polls of this sort shouldn't be done, as they're a most corrupting influence, due to the negative mindsets they can attract. The Jason Todd affair of 1988 should serve as a vital lesson and textbook example of how not to solve a problem that could very easily have been solved if the staffers had just learned how to stand up to selfish lemmings who couldn't tell the difference between fiction and reality, and make improvements in whatever personality traits they applied to the fictional character.

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Black cartoonist's politically motivated comic panel causes offense, leads to the strip being dropped by papers

NBC news tells of a black cartoonist co-writing the Six Chix comic strip for the past 2 decades who had an installment withdrawn from newspapers because readers didn't like the joke she'd put in. What's interesting about this case is that the cartoonist appears to be a Black Lives Matter supporter:
A recent installment of long-running syndicated comic strip “Six Chix” tackling anti-mask rhetoric from a Black Lives Matter movement perspective was pulled from some newspapers last Tuesday. [...]

The newest installment depicts a Black woman at a grocery store wearing a face covering and “I Can’t Breathe” written across her shirt — a nod to the death of George Floyd in police custody earlier this year, Xunise told NBC News.

A blue-eyed, older white woman says: “If you can’t breathe, then take that silly mask off!”

Tea Fougner, editorial director at King Features, the comic strip’s syndicate, confirmed to NBC News that angry responses to the strip resulted in some newspapers dropping “Six Chix” from publication entirely.

While the company is not allowed to share the names of its clients, Fougner said, an apology was printed at an undisclosed newspaper in the comic’s usual spot later in the week.

“We have notified the syndicate that provides the comic that we will no longer be running Six Chix in our newspaper as a result,” the apology read. “We’ve also requested an apology from them. Our apologies for a cartoon that reflected the exact opposite of what we stand for as a newspaper.”
Here's the cartoon panel in question, along with the cartoonist's response: If I understand this correctly, what they're implying is that whites don't understand the hazards of Covid19, while making a questionable joke alluding the Floyd case? Let me put it this way. I don't condone censorship, but it doesn't put the cartoon panel above poor taste and criticism. Here's more:
In response, Fougner, along with Xunise’s colleagues at “Six Chix,” defended the cartoon.

“Bianca created the July 28, 2020, ‘Six Chix’ cartoon to be a joke commenting on how Black issues are often disregarded as a personal problem and not a systemic issue,” Fougner said. “She is shedding light on two pandemics right now: one on race and another on COVID-19, and both are not being taken seriously while they are destroying lives.”
But do they believe it's only whites who don't have a clue? They certainly seem to think whites have no business finding the joke a bad one:
“I am being silenced over white feelings from a gag comic,” she said. “This is a complete step back in the wrong direction.” [...]

“We spent due diligence explaining the ‘hard to grasp’ satire,” she said. “Please stop giving the benefit of the doubt to people who silence Black voices.”
But even satire can be in bad taste and form, and whites are no less vulnerable to censorship than blacks are. Just take a look at how "cancel culture" has become so prevalent in the past decade, and has affected plenty of whites, right down to the comics industry proper. On which note, the cartoonists don't argue they've fallen victim to such a concept; they only complain of suppression to free speech based on their specific racial background. Maybe the newspapers shouldn't have cancelled their comic strip altogether, and just insisted on an apology for making whites out to look brain-dead. But if the cartoonists are going to be so narrow, to say nothing of lionizing a bad movement built on vile ideologies, then they're not making the case properly for why their strip shouldn't have been subject to cancellation.

The point is: everyone, no matter their racial background, has responsibility to bear when it comes to Covid19 and racial strife, and anybody, no matter their background, can act irresponsibly. That's why it's ludicrous to make whites out to look like the only ignorant ones.

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Wednesday, August 05, 2020 

The industry supposedly continues to reckon with sexual misconduct and abuse

The Hollywood Reporter wrote another piece about comicdom allegedly trying to improve the atmosphere following several allegations of sexual misconduct in the past month, and most eyebrow raising is when they get around to the talk of "gatekeeping", which is precisely what's led to anti-conservative blacklisting:
As Marvel, DC and Dark Horse cut ties with creators, calls grow for new protections in a largely freelance industry: "Who has enough power to call out bad behavior without losing their job?"
That's a great question, one that decidedly must apply to treatment conservatives as well: can they express themselves without losing their jobs? Jon Malin is a more recent example of an artist who was blacklisted for being right-leaning, and what backing does he get in the wider medium? Almost nothing.
Taki Soma was surprised when a friend messaged her in June to say something big was brewing. Fifteen years earlier, Soma, a Hugo-nominated comic book writer and artist, reported to police that she was sexually assaulted by Charles Brownstein, executive director of the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund, a nonprofit whose advisory board includes such industry heavyweights as Sandman writer Neil Gaiman, Sin City creator Frank Miller and DC publisher Jim Lee.

The details of the alleged 2005 assault at an Ohio convention had been publicly available online for years, and Brownstein, who called the evening in which he groped Soma "a stupid, drunken prank" in 2006, had remained at his job, where he led the organization in advocating for First Amendment rights for comics creators. That changed June 22, with the executive resigning following a renewed focus on alleged abuses within the comics industry. "It felt incredible but also enraging because it should have happened 15 years ago," says Soma, who believes she lost out on work after speaking up.
She's damn right about that. Not mentioned in the article, however, is that she may not have initially pressed charges against Brownstein, though she may have been able to file them later, yet it seems he never spent time in jail. The piece goes on to tell, however, that not only Brownstein, but also Warren Ellis and Jason Latour look to be facing more consequences:
Brownstein's departure was part of a reckoning that has affected the comic book industry since June, with multiple high-profile creators having been accused of abusive or exploitative behavior. Such publishers as Marvel, DC and Dark Horse have quietly severed ties with several of the accused even as they grapple with how to reform their industry from within.

The Hollywood Reporter has learned that the projects canceled include a Batman story from the superstar writer-creator of Netflix's Castlevania, Warren Ellis, who has been accused of sexual harassment and abuse by multiple women. (Sources say that while Ellis has completed work on the upcoming season of Castlevania, he will not be back for potential future seasons). DC also jettisoned a digital project from artist Cameron Stewart, known for his work on Catwoman, after model Aviva Artzy tweeted that she had been groomed by Stewart when she was 16 and he was in his 30s.
It looks like a whole Bat-miniseries Ellis was reportedly developing was cancelled, according to this Bleeding Cool entry, and most interesting is that Declan Shalvey, an artist now boycotting Dynamite because of the alleged Comicsgate ties, was involved with Ellis' project. Assuming Shalvey knew about Ellis' grimier antics, one can only wonder why Shalvey continued associations with him, yet Dynamite's the baddie here? Even earlier, Image removed an article they posted about Ellis' forum. Here's more about Jason Latour, whose antics were downright sleazy:
Also facing accusations of grooming young comics fans and industry hopefuls was Jason Latour, co-creator of Marvel's Spider-Gwen, the fan-favorite hero voiced by Hailee Steinfeld in the Oscar-winning Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse. (Marvel sources tell THR that the company has no plans with the creator.) And Dark Horse Comics fired longtime Hellboy editor Scott Allie after sexual abuse allegations from a co-worker.
What Allie did at least 2 decades ago was by far the most obscene of the acts all these thugs could've pulled, and as I said before, he belongs in prison. As for Latour, we can only wonder what'll happen to his writings for Marvel, now that he's been unmasked? Presumably, they'll fall out of print for awhile.

Now, here's where they get around to the matter of "gatekeeping". This is quite interesting:
While the industry has become a lucrative idea factory that powers Disney's Marvel Studios and Warner Bros.' stable of DC films, it has struggled to quickly deal with abuse allegations. The comics industry relies on informal networks of gatekeepers such as editorial staff or established freelance creators — rather than agents — to bring in new talent. It's a system observers say creates an unbalanced power dynamic that can lead to abuse.

"When new people get brought in, they are brought in by people who are already working," says comic book writer Kelly Sue DeConnick, whose work on Captain Marvel helped inspire the $1.12 billion-grossing Brie Larson film. "There's no traditional ladder. So the way people have gotten in is through these powerful gatekeepers. A lot of those powerful gatekeepers are super lovely, but there ought to be another way."

DeConnick, who acknowledges that she herself is a gatekeeper, is among those who have suggested that comic book publishers require creative talent to use agents to advocate on their behalf, as is done in the film and TV industry. "If something like that were available, it would decrease the power of some of the gatekeepers," notes DeConnick, who also suggests young creators hire attorneys to protect their financial interests.
Ah, now here's where things take a turn to something THR has no interest addressing by contrast: blacklisting conservatives and anybody else who takes a position considered unacceptable by today's modern movements for political correctness and social justice. DeConnick and THR just barely hint at this. And that's another problem that's gone unmentioned in this Graeme McMillan-penned item, which won't do much to solve one of the biggest problems in entertainment today if nobody's willing to address another elephant in the room. Why, what if a lady who supports conservative politics wants to make it in comicdom, and either she's kept out because of her leanings, or worse, if she falls victim to sexual abuse, nobody's willing to aid her because of where and what she stands for? Something tells me DeConnick won't advocate for people like that, based on her standings as a left-wing gatekeeper. What's more, agents don't mean much if they happen to be liberal themselves, and won't serve as representatives if they despise a client's politics. Chuck Dixon's one of the most notable conservatives who'd been rejected by the mainstream, and Jon Malin was another, more recent example. Nothing's being done to help their causes, so what's the paper's point if they don't ask DeConnick if she realizes she's part of the problem? Why, where was she when Eddie Berganza was still on the loose?

Then, the article also contains mention of something that I've long concluded is exaggerated at best best and defamatory at worst:
Sexually predatory behavior has been a problem within the comic book industry for decades. Stories abound about Julius Schwartz — the late editor credited with DC's superhero revivals in the 1950s that would inspire the creation of Fantastic Four and the entire Marvel Universe. Multiple comic book professionals like Sandman artist Colleen Doran have spoken out about harassment by him.
First off, I'm sure the industry's always had a problem with sexual misconduct for decades, as they say, just like any other medium. But these allegations against Schwartz have never been proven indefinitely, any more than what Stan Lee faced shortly before his death 2 years ago, mainly because I never found found any legal records making the case, and I don't think "multiple" pros ever accused Schwartz. I'd written about these allegations before, and while I may have been more polite the first time around, I'm less inclined to be so this time. At this point, that anyone would make use of this ambiguous allegation made by Doran, let alone Heidi MacDonald, as fodder for a news item is getting irritating, and was clearly not written with extensive research. What I do know, is that, for somebody who complained about harassment, Doran wasn't setting a very good example after, as I discovered, she associated with a cybertroll on Twitter who was resorting to harassment and doxxing, and whose targets even included Ethan van Sciver. As seen in the following:
Now I can believe the other 2 whose account names appear in the picture would be willing to meet with somebody that revolting, but Doran also met with the creep?!? Wow...for somebody who once complained about harassment, she sure doesn't seem concerned if it affects anybody whose beliefs are anathema to hers. I think I can understand why a video filmer on Youtube was calling for a boycott of Doran's work, along with several other far-leftists. When I discovered this, I was filled with distaste, and decided that was the last straw; I can't buy into accusations made by somebody who, as also discovered, took to retweeting the messages of a certain novelist who alienated comics audiences from the mainstream. Now, Doran seems to have erased quite a few of her Twitter posts from the past few years, but looking around the Internet Archive, I managed to find at least a few very startling discoveries circa 2015-19, as seen in the following screencaps:

It's said a picture can be worth 1000 words, and these, for example, are quite illuminating. I'm quite sure Doran was well aware of what Meltzer penned by the time these were retweeted, and anybody who's going to give free ad space to an unrepentant novelist who cobbles together a comic minimizing a serious issue she supposedly complained about has left me far less convinced she's being truthful. Seriously, I just don't know why I should buy what Doran allegedly said about Schwartz if this is whom she considers acceptable company. If I thought Hero Initiative was worth backing, I'd do it in my own words, on my own Twitter account, and wouldn't want to retweet what some charlatan said about the same. Let's remember Doran was once chummy with cartoonist Dave Sim (and if this Q&A with her on an affiliated site is any suggestion, she still is), whose Cerebus comic contained insulting attitudes towards women (the "Red Sophia" story from early in the run looked pretty atrocious), got increasingly worse as it went along, and some of the op-eds he'd written back in the day were just as creepy. (Bizarre irony: the same cybertroll Doran associated with actually accused Sim of grooming a 14-year-old girl, but only for the sake of attacking van Sciver, who stupidly considered Sim for writing a Cyberfrog entry before calling it off.) IIRC, what Doran alleged supposedly took place around 1979-80, but I later discovered a picture from the 1981 Chicago Comicon where Doran not only met Schwartz and Jack Kirby, and seemed to be getting along with the former as much as the latter, Sim was spending time with them as well. This was about a year after the supposed incident in a limousine, so again, I just don't know what's going on. But Doran and Sim seem to have known each other a long time, and if I didn't know better, I'd start wondering if they conspired together. At this point, I wouldn't be shocked if they'd turn against Kirby too if they thought it easy. Here's a few more screencaps I got decidedly worth pondering:

Let's see, she considers Saladin Ahmed good company to keep, and has no issues with a feminist as reprehensible as Anita Sarkeesian and her Feminist Frequency propaganda, nor does she have a problem with an extremist like Visaggio. Okay, I get the picture. Let us be clear: Doran's a talented artist, I won't deny that. And so far, I haven't heard she's had any involvement with the Whisper Network, unlike Vissagio. But the company she seems to keep, along with her politics and such, do not inspire confidence she's somebody to consider worth taking at face value on what she's alleged in the past, and after thinking about this some more, I can say I'm just not interested in buying her books, period, because my intellect is insulted beyond belief by this point.

And doing some more research around the web, I came across this op-ed by veteran Mindy Newell, who, while she says it's not like everything was rosy, as she once got a crude letter in the mail, she got along quite well with her male colleagues like Len Wein and Marv Wolfman, and had the following to say:
But this was the only time that I experienced any kind of direct sexual harassment in the comics industry. Perhaps it’s because the men I met were, for the most part, of an age – all high school and college students in the 60s, shutting down universities and marching in the street to protest the Vietnam War, “tuning in, turning on, dropping out” during those summers of love. Women were burning their bras, men were burning their draft cards, and the police were beating up protestors at political conventions while inside the buildings journalists were being manhandled off the floor. The men who were older – Julie Schwartz, Joe Kubert, and others – had lived through their own hells of the Depression and World War II.

They were mature.

They were adults.

They were men.
And thinking about this, I think I believe Newell far more than I do Doran. Heck, if Flo Steinberg got along so well with Stan Lee in her time, then it stands to reason Schwartz was far from what Doran/MacDonald shamefully made him out to be too. I've decidedly got a new special respect for Newell, and lost the same for Doran. Which brings us to the main point of this discussion: it's time for these attacks on Schwartz to stop. I don't think he was a saint any more than anybody else, nor do I look at comicdom's history through a rose-colored lens (just take a look at the sordid side of cartoonist Al Capp, who was arrested for sex offenses in Wisconsin). But the way these SJWs are turning Schwartz into a posthumous punching bag without any clear documentation is getting out of hand, and is bound to do more harm than good. Just look at what almost happened to Lee over 2 years ago, before his fans fought back. THR does no favors when they start using that "multiple" mishmash without researching properly to clarify allegations. And you know something's wrong when a propagandist like MacDonald is involved.

Again, I don't think the past industry was throughly healthy in terms of interactions between men and women. But I do think the reason why the present one is so unhealthy is because of the gatekeepers, so concerned as they are with barring conservatives and anybody not considered PC enough out of comicdom and movies that they have no interest in making things better for women who want to contribute to the art. Sadly, they'll never consider their stances a problem, even now.

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Giving Carol Danvers a "sister" doesn't improve the dire situation if she's still a Kree

Polygon's posted another of their sugary takes on new comics of the week, and here it's the 18th issue of the umpteenth Capt. Marvel series, where hints of their negative view on patriotism seep in:
It’s been a busy few years for Captain Marvel, and I’m not talking about her movie. A little while ago she found out that her mother was secretly a Kree defector, rewriting the origin of her superpowers from a chance encounter with an alien warrior to her earned birthright.

But being publicly outed as half alien hasn’t always been easy for Carol Danvers. The US military certainly wasn’t pleased at the revelation that their former officer was a descendant of a war-mongering space empire. And now she’ll probably be in trouble with another jingoistic empire: The combined Kree-Skrull armada.

But what’s a person to do when the accused war criminal you’ve been sent to execute turns out to be your half-sister?
And what's a person to make of the insinuation that patriotism is bad, and that the Kree-Skrull both represent it? This is terrible, but not unlike Polygon, to use such leftist tactics. And Marvel under C.B. Cebulski still goes by the forced and contrived canon that Carol's really an alien, all because it wouldn't be right for her to get her powers from a man like Mar-Vell, huh? It doesn't sound like the US army fares much better here either.
See, Carol also just took over Ronan the Accuser’s job (and his hammer), as the Judge Dredd of the Kree empire. And she’s definitely shirking that duty by hiding her sister, Lauri-Ell. (Look, all Kree names are just like that.) Lauri-Ell has been accused of destroying an entire city of innocent civilians, but she maintains her innocence. Seems like a real conundrum for our dear Captain.
Turning Carol into a variation on Dredd isn't appealing either, and is no better than how she was depicted during Civil War. But that's Marvel for you these days, having destroyed all that made their universe work in the first place as far back as 2 decades ago, and merging with the Disney corporation only made things worse. Only if Marvel were ever purchased by a smaller company not focused solely on movie material would it be possible to mend any of this.

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Tuesday, August 04, 2020 

So the Comics Bulletin website doesn't want to discuss Dynamite anymore...

I discovered that a few weeks ago, Comics Bulletin, originally known as Silver Bullet, announced the following after Dynamite originally announced they were going to make use of a Comicsgate supporter's artwork for a Vampirella/Red Sonja cover:
Because of this, we will no longer be covering Dynamite comics for the foreseeable future.
Not even The Boys, which, if memory serves, is penned by a far-leftist like Garth Ennis? Well, it's not like Comics Bulletin's been particularly relevant for years now, and they sure don't seem to have as many updates in the past decade as they used to. A woman in the comments section said the following about the columnist who made the site's announcement:
Apparently Daniel has convinced himself that comics require him to sell. The decades of comics that sold before Daniel was even born would heavily suggest otherwise.
Correct. It's no one specialty writer needed to sell a particular comic or publisher's output. I've got a feeling the opposition to Dynamite is doing it based on their being a smaller publisher, and view them as expendable because they're not the Big Two, nor are they a more prominent outfit like Dark Horse. If a mainstream publisher wanted to hire Cecil Jones, they might make a huge fuss, but are less likely to quit employment or refuse to do news coverage of their products. That's why smaller outfits have to be cautious what kind of people they associate with, if indeed they're willing to throw them under the bus over petty issues, all because they believe that, if you've got the Big Two around, a smaller outfit can be discarded like tissue paper at the flick of a switch.

Until recently, I had Comics Bulletin on my list of external links. Discovering they sought 15 minutes of fame over a tempest in a teapot made me decide the time had come to excise them from the list. Putting their politics before entertainment value is what's brought down the best offerings in showbiz.

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Monday, August 03, 2020 

Guess who Brian Augustyn's favorite president is?

I discovered the former DC writer/editor Augustyn posting pictures of whom he thinks was a great president in recent times:
He's clearly not all that different from Mark Waid, recalling Augustyn was the main editor for the Flash in the past 3 decades. Leftists like Augustyn tragically ignore the disasters that took place during Obama's term of office, including the jihadist attack at Fort Hood near Kileen, Texas, and the loss of ambassador Chris Stevens in Libya. What's to celebrate, when you ponder those failures, for example? And don't be surprised if this is a clue to whom Augustyn intends to vote for in November - the former vice president Joe Biden, despite his own disturbing conduct in the past. A real shame.

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Sunday, August 02, 2020 

How can the X-Men still matter if they're hostage to political correctness?

A writer at the Triad City Beat wrote about the X-Men's history as an allusion to the civil rights movement of the 50s and 60s for Free Comic Book Day, and says they still matter:
Did Stan Lee intend for the story of the mutants to be an allegory for the Civil Rights Movement? Were Xavier and Magneto stand-ins for Martin Luther King Jr and Malcolm X’s opposing ideals? That debate goes on, but 1968’s Stan’s Soapbox Editorial feature where Lee declared racial prejudice and bigotry to be the deadliest of social ills suggests he may have had awareness at some point. Writer Chris Claremont’s X-Men “God Loves, Man Kills” and other stories more firmly connected the plight of the mutants to that of those persecuted and oppressed in our world. Despite victories and strides forward, as the real world experienced the same, mutants were still persecuted and killed in the streets globally in the Marvel Universe.
Well today, those real life metaphors for mutants include conservatives, whites, Jews, Christians, blacks enslaved by Muslims in north Africa, and also native Europeans under threat from Islam. But did the columnist who wrote this piece intend to allude to that? If these modern issues don't count, and only political correctness does, what's the use of this whole argument?
Marvel Comics reflects the world outside your window and Marvel’s mighty mutants have caught up if not gotten ahead of today’s changing world. The X-Men still swear to protect a world that feared and hates them, but now it will be on their own terms and now is the time to read X-men comics.
Sorry, but I think not. If the writers at Marvel won't recognize the phoniness of Black Lives Matter, or why the Portland riots are a serious wrong, or why BLM's done as much harm to the black community as to anyone else, and won't develop any metaphors to make the points, then they're not reflecting the world outside our windows at all. In fact, who knows if the SJWs even believe the X-Men matter now? It's not like they've sold well in a long time, and many of these PC advocates clearly aren't buying and reading the X-books. Sadly, it's clear that not only has Marvel fallen victim to SJWs exploiting the comics for extreme political agendas, the mainstream press isn't interested in pointing this out either.

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Saturday, August 01, 2020 

Gail Simone no longer working for Dynamite, and yet, the publisher's not making things better

One of the most overrated writers still hanging around the medium announced she's stopped working for Dynamite: Somehow, I have a hard time believing she's sincere about this. Indeed, one thing's certain: she'll be ridiculed for associating with the company to start with, mainly because it's entirely possible she knew about some of the relations with Comicsgate supporters, and only now, when others bring it up, does she follow suit. And we don't need her. She's caused only so much trouble in her own way, is involved with a group of troublemakers on Facebook whose targets included Dynamite, that it's clear already she's more trouble than she's worth to the industry. They'd be far better off without her around. This is fishy. It sounds more like she's burning bridges with the publisher than reconciling differences. But that's okay, because all she's doing is making things worse, by confirming she cannot accept the company of conservatives. It's not like she's ever defended Chuck Dixon, after Dan DiDio fired him and got him almost entirely blacklisted over the past decade or so.

Trouble is, Dynamite's management isn't making things better when, as told in this biased Comics Beat entry, they issued a statement in desperate support of "diversity", as if that's going to help:
“Dynamite Entertainment is a partner in the fight for equality and inclusion. Our company was founded on these core values more than 15 years ago and they are essential to the creative process – the work of visionary artists and entrepreneurs – that we are passionate about. Intolerance has no place in our company or our industry. The impulse behind this brief association was that of helping a friend of many decades and his family, and not how that assistance could potentially affect our valued colleagues, partners, and friends. That association is behind us and this time has strengthened our resolve to continue working with the most diverse talent in creating the best comics possible.”
I'm afraid this is just as empty as the pathetic pledge from over a month ago, and only bends the knee to extremists. Including the Beat's own writer, whose bias comes to the fore:
The statement still feels…off. The cover in question may have been the flashpoint for the backlash against Dynamite, but the publisher’s association with creators who also associate with c*micsgate has been going on for years, and it’s been alleged that Dynamite founder Nick Barrucci has been assisting them behind-the-scenes for years.

While their roster of creators does point to inclusion, their repeated associations with other comics professionals who are known to be against diversity, and to engage in targeted harassment campaigns to that effect, make it hard to reconcile where the publisher actually stands.
This is so boring as it's repetitive of stuff we've heard before and was never literally proven. And all the while, leftists who made offensive statements receive more lenience. I've got a feeling this was all planned just to tear down the company because the SJWs decided Barrucci's outfit outlived their usefulness. And I don't think Dynamite had serious associations with Comicsgate supporters "for years". This sounds more like another smear tactic in motion.

And Games Radar/Newsarama's not being kind to them either when they say:
Stopping short of an apology, Dynamite Entertainment has issued a statement seemingly in response to being called out by fans and comic book professionals on social media for their association with self-described affiliates of Comicsgate.

In an unsigned statement that neither identifies Comicsgate by name nor any of the creators presumably involved, the comic book publisher founded by Nick Barrucci as an offshoot of Dynamic Forces defines itself as a "partner in the fight for equality and inclusion," explains its association with the unnamed figure as "helping a friend of many decades and his family," and announced the association is "behind us."
It's clear their writer isn't willing to let it slide either, and if Dynamite goes the way IDW's bound to be going, I'm sure they won't regret it. Trouble is, Dynamite's inability to just be quiet and not let all this get to them is bound to alienate some of the better people who'd supported them till now. If Dynamite's business does collapse, that'll be a shame, honestly. But attempting to please everyone is a strategy that simply doesn't work well, and this divisive step could end things badly for them.

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